SHARKTOPUS VS. WHALEWOLF (2015) Reviews and overview [updated]

 

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Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf is a 2015 American monster movie about a mad scientist who mixes a killer whale and a wolf with an ex-baseball star. This gene hybrid creates the Whalewolf. Now, it’s up to Sharktopus to stop it, via Voodoo…

Directed by Kevin O’Neill (Dinocroc; DinosharkSharktopus vs. Pteracuda) from a screenplay written by Matt Yamashita (Sharktopus vs. Pteracuda; Art School of Horrors; Death Race 2050).

The movie was the second sequel to Sharktopus (2010) and — like Sharktopus vs. Pteracuda — was rushed into production by veteran genre filmmaker Roger Corman and his wife Julie for his New Horizons company in response to the massive social media interest in Syfy’s Sharknado films.

Somewhere along the way, the movie’s other monster mutated from being a part-man, part-piranha and part-tarantula into a part-killer whale and part-wolf! Could this be because werewolf films such as WolfCop were suddenly hits too?

The film premiered on Syfy on July 19, 2015.

The movie stars Casper Van Dien (Sleepy Hollow; PythonThe Pact) and his real-life partner Catherine Oxenberg (The Lair of the White Worm), Akari Endo (Sharktopus vs. Pteracuda), Sarodj Bertin, Gökdeniz Özcetin, Yasser Michelén, Mario Ceara, Olga Valdez. Iggy Pop has a fleeting cameo role…

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Review:

Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf takes place in the Dominican Republic. A disgraced baseball player, Felix Rosa (played by Mario Arturo Hernandez,) goes to a mysterious German scientist, Doctor Reinhardt (Catherine Oxenberg), in search of a treatment that will again make him a superstar. However, as often happens with mad scientists, Doctor Reinhardt has an agenda of her own and soon Felix has been transformed into a hybrid between a whale and wolf. This means that he looks like a wolf but he swims like a whale and he tends to act like a dog.

Except, of course, when he’s eating people.

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When he’s eating people, he’s all Whalewolf. Meanwhile, alcoholic boat captain Ray (Casper Van Dien, giving a likeable and energetic performance) has discovered that Sharktopus — a creature with the head of a shark and the body of an octopus — is swimming in the waters around the Dominican Republic. At first, Ray and his sidekick, Pablo (Jorge Eduardo De Los Santos), aren’t too concerned about the Sharktopus or anything else. But then the local Voodoo priest (Tony Almont) demands that they bring him the heart of Sharktopus and when they don’t promptly comply, he starts to stick pins into Ray and Pablo voodoo dolls.

While all of that is going on, Ray’s almost girlfriend, police officer Nita (Akari Endo), is trying to keep the peace but that’s a little bit difficult when you not only have to deal with a voodoo cult, an alcoholic boat captain, and a German mad scientist but also with Sharktopus and Whalewolf as well!

But that’s not all! A Dominican version of The Bachelor is being filmed nearby. It would be a lot easier for the bachelor to find love if not for the fact that Sharktopus keeps eating all of his potential wives.

And finally, there’s a tourist who is vacationing in the Dominican Republic and is convinced that she’s starting a new chapter of her life. Needless to say, things don’t exactly end well…

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Okay, you may have read all that and may now be under the impression that there’s a lot going on in Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf and you are absolutely correct. This is a very busy film but, then again, that’s exactly why it works. No time is wasted when it comes to introducing both Sharktopus and Whalewolf. It’s nonstop Sharktopus and Whalewolf action, without a single slow moment.

The tone is pretty much set from the moment that Catherine Oxenberg first appears and starts to speak in the most over-the-top, deliberately exaggerated German accent ever heard. Then Casper Van Dien shows up, pulling flasks out of his pockets and, at one point, getting into a literal slap fight with Sharktopus. (Casper Van Dien gives a performance that can be positively compared to the best work of Bruce Campbell.)

Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf works as both an entertaining monster film and a glorious send-up of the entire genre.

Lisa Marie Bowman, guest reviewer via Through the Shattered Lens

Other reviews:

“The finale at the marina comes off just as good with lots of action from both the creature as well as the containment attempts which are highly inventive and exciting confrontations that really score well in here. Packed with plenty of gore here from the numerous kills throughout, a novel creature design and plenty of enjoyable action bits amount to all the positives here against the few negatives.” Don’s World of Horror and Exploitation 

“Generally, Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf is the best-looking of the three … The score is the quirkiest, the most suspenseful and fitting of the series, while the movie clearly knows what it wants to be (which is campy fun) and doesn’t overdo it to the point of being dull and who it’s aiming at (which I didn’t get so much with the previous two) and there are some clever jokes in the script.” The Little Songing Bird

“This is the third film in the Sharktopus series and it’s certainly the best. I think what makes this one work is that the film gives a lot of effort in trying to be funny and campy. The first two films in the series as well as many of these SyFy movies seem to think that if you purposely make a movie bad then it’s going to be entertaining […] This one here is obviously silly and over-the-top but the film doesn’t play it dumb and instead comes up with a few clever jokes that actually work.” Michael Elliott

“Yamashita provides a lot of crazy business for both his protagonists and their monstrous foes, including some jokey behavior from the shark-creature. I’ve usually deemed both Van Dien and Oxenberg to be rather bland performers, but they really set their teeth in their respective colorful roles. Thanks to a better variety of business, the two of them are at least as much fun as the clashing colossi.” Naturalistic! Uncanny! Marvelous!

Crab Monsters, Teenage Cavemen, and Candy Stripe Nurses Roger Corman King of the B Movie

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“What makes Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf slightly better than its predecessor is that we care about the characters. They’re funny. They’re caricatures. The writers managed to cram a zombie subplot that comes completely out of leftfield and a voodoo priestess into the script as if two ridiculous animal hybrids weren’t enough to keep us entertained.” Tales of Terror

Sharktopus vs Whalewolf is just as stupid a premise as any other SyFy flick, and the filmmakers embrace this, turning it into one of the funnier films. And yes, it’s meant to be funny. The effects are slightly more polished in the CGI department, but it’s still CGI and the Whalewolf looks more like a monster puppy than a man-eater, but that’s part of the charm.” Thomas Clement

Choice dialogue:

Inspector Nita Morales: “Aah, this place stinks! Not even a monster would live in here!”

Cast and characters:

Casper Van Dien … Ray Brady
Catherine Oxenberg … Doctor Elsa Reinhardt
Jennifer Wenger … Nurse Betty
Bruna Rubio … Bar victim
Akari Endo … Inspector Nita Morales
Amanda Philipson … Additional Voices
Patrick Denver … Nurse
Sarodj Bertin … Widow
Mar Flores … Tiffany
Keisha Shadè Akinyemi … Extra
Andrew E. Tilles … Huerta
Yasser Michelén … Reality Show Director
Patricia Soriano … Chief Tiny’s Sister
Mario Peguero … TV Host
Juan Maria Almonte … Chief Tiny’s Henchman
Ben Farrow
Claudia Moncada … Jazmin
Olga Valdez … Carrie
Tony Almont … Francois Tiny
Alberto Samboy … Chief Tiny’s Henchman
Katyuska Licairac … Mourner
Jorge Eduardo De Los Santos … Pablo
Jorge Velazco … Tourist guy
Mario Ceara … Bachelor
Ernesto Baez … Manager
William Simon … The Priest
Mario Arturo Hernández … Felix Rosa / Whalewolf
Joe Forbes … Tourist (uncredited)

Technical details:

85 minutes
Audio: Stereo
Aspect ratio: 1.78: 1

Filming locations:

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Trailer:

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